Robert Profile - (18432239)

cook's profile


Home Town: Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada
Living In:
Member Since: Jun. 2006
Cooking Level: Intermediate
Cooking Interests: Baking, Italian
Hobbies: Photography, Music, Wine Tasting
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About this Cook
I am an IT teacher living in the Middle East (Qatar) originally from Eastern Canada. Qatar is an amazing place in terms of cooking. All the ingredients are different..when I look for certain things I can't find them, then I can't find their substitutes either! I've resorted to tweaking nearly everything that I try to use local ingredients. Luckily the locally available stuff is really cheap; my new favorite is Lebanese flat bread which is really good because it is baked daily and only sets me back around 30 cents. I like the challenge of doing things that other people won't try and I'll keep at it for a long time to learn how to consistenly do it right.
My favorite things to cook
I have been working on yeast based items for about 10 years. It started with me becoming mad one day when my favorite premade pizza crust couldn't be found so I thought I should learn how to make my own. Since then I've made all sorts of bread products including pita pockets, english muffins, croissants, and focaccia.
My cooking triumphs
The first time that I tried a pie crust from scratch it turned out pretty good; which I thought was quite impressive. My pizza crust is by far the best thing that I consistently produce and over time I'm tweaking the ingredients and cooking getting the crust closer to PizzaHut's ... this was my comments while in North America; so far I haven't had much luck...I really miss my KitchenAid stand mixer :(
My cooking tragedies
I discovered that the yeast here in Qatar is quite powerful compared to North America. My first attempt at bread generated copious amounts of alcohol...even survived the cooking process that the bread smelt like vodka and my tounge went numb when I ate the bread.
Recipe Reviews 1 review
Chocolate Cheesecake I
This cheesecake is very good and very smooth. My first couple of attempts gave the usual top cracks. I've been able to make a couple now without problems here is my approach. When beating the cream cheese I stop frequently and place the stainless steel bowl into a sink of hot water to help soften the cream cheese so that I don't have to beat it too much. I spray the sides of the pan with cooking spray above the crust line. This keeps the cheese cake from sticking to the sides while cooling and shrinking. I tried to seal up my spring form pans but I was never able to keep the water from leaking in so I've never attempted a standard water bath. I do fill a small roasing pan with hot water and place it on the bottom rack of the oven...the idea here is to try and keep the moisture high in the oven. The recipe calls for 325F. I have a convection oven and I've had really good success at 290F for 1 hour. To help control the cooling rate I switch the oven off at 1 hour and leave the door closed. After an hour of sitting there, I will open the oven door a crack to help cool some more.

66 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Mar. 11, 2007

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